Oh how i long for the Promised Land. I dream of a day when I will wake, without the ache.
one of my goals for this year was to camp out in the old testament for some focused time over the course of a few months to sit, breathe in, & exhale the journey of the Israelites as they passed through the desert + waded in between the waters of the red sea which eventually ended with the bountiful promised land. i imagine how dry their spirits were as they fumbled through the land with grit in their teeth. how they pushed forward with the image of a land flowing with milk + honey somewhere just over the horizon. trudging through the heat, unleveled surfaces, with crying babies, & hungry hearts. they longed deeply for the land that was promised to them by the One who created it all… and so do we.
we satisfy our cravings in this journey for something beyond this world in our own unique ways. we turn to all kinds of things to provide temporary relief. the obvious ones dull the pain pretty quickly: food, pills, drinks. they force our physical body to feel differently than before we intake the substance. the subtle ones start in fear and end in micromanaging every detail of our work, home, people. the elusive ones are the lies we begin to believe about others and ourselves & we confuse it all with reality, for years + years the cycle perpetuates & footholds take root.
anyone of us can look out into our towns + cities, even within the walls of our homes we have built, and quickly be swept up by the shattered dreams abounding. failing marriages, terminally ill children, lonely shut-ins, air strikes, addictions, robotic lifestyles, abuse, poverty, insecurity… and anxiety takes root. we come to realize that our safety + security is not up to us & may not look like what we have in mind.
yet we also see traces of hope springing up as people surprise us, trees bloom, friends take the time to listen, generosity is extended, peace washes over us, an illness is healed, light cracks through the dark, a book speaks just what we needed to hear, a child touches our face, a payment is provided for, a battle is won, a song sums up our deepest desire, and our God’s presence is as close as a heavy breath in our ear.
how can we exist in the ache with both polar extremes pelting us like a hard spring rain?
for me personally, tonight i am snuggling a large lab, eating chocolate almonds, drinking tea, and listening to this video over&over. i resonate so deeply with the raw truths depicted that i cannot help but share it with you now. being reminded that i am not alone is enough for me tonight. as spring nears & the ground thaws we get the gift of a visual depiction of the beauty that comes from the earth after a long, cold season of winter. HOPE is alive + well + all around us — even in the chaos, we can rest in knowing our Promised Land is yet to come. & scattered all around like seeds falling on the soil, are heavenly tastes of the utter fulfillment we are promised beyond this earthly dwelling.
a friend’s husband is in the midst of creating an album entitled: Promised Land by John Lucas. he puts words to this longing we have living in this broken, yet beautiful land when he says “its easy to become cynical & overwhelmed with the current state of our home, and our hearts on this earth, but deep in our bones we are called to something greater, to pursue love + creativity through our own limitations & the turmoil of this earth, i believe it to be the purest of all beauties. it takes sacrifice & it reminds of who we truly are & what we are becoming. it leaves an ache for a land + a home we have glimpsed but haven’t yet fully entered. the earth itself begins to heal.”
take a moment to listen to the heart behind his work & if you are moved, maybe help him kickstart:
[want to learn more about the journey to the promised land, hop over to IF:equip’s study on Faith]